September 26th brought a special treat for the people of Seoul, South Korea, and a sample of Kim Jong Un’s worst nightmare as South Korean tanks and missiles rolled down the streets of the capital. As a celebration of the 75th Armed Forces Day, it marked the anniversary of their military foundation.
As South Korea takes a larger investment from the United States and Japan for their military defenses against North Korea, the supreme ruler is stuck watching. For this anniversary, he not only certainly saw the parade, but he got a special message from South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol. “If North Korea uses nuclear weapons, its regime will be brought to an end by an overwhelming response from the (Seoul-Washington) alliance.”
Last held for the 65th anniversary in 2013, the parade of troops and equipment made their way down the midday rain-soaked streets, past City Hall and the historic Gwanghwamun Square. On the edge of the streets, people stood, with many in ponchos and others holding umbrellas. A few people were heard saying, “God was crying after seeing what South Korea would do. North Korea should just join us. Peace would be cheaper.”
Peter Layton, a visiting fellow at the Griffith Asia Institute at Griffith University, saw the parade himself. He saw it as nothing more than a dog and pony show for other countries. With the Korean defense industry booming while the rest of the country was failing, the parade was a way to let others know what they could do. He also felt that with Yoon there, he told the region that Japan was once again the superpower in the region they once were. No longer to be trifled with, he wants to project the image of success.